Get Your Church Involved
Often at the time of elections there is a vast overload of information. We can be overwhelmed with leaflets, endless campaigning from message boards to twitter adverts to door-knocking from candidates and political parties. There is far too much information to take in.
Want to make things easier for voters in your area? Why not host a Hustings event in your church?
What is a Hustings?
Hustings are Question Time events, held in constituencies across Northern Ireland, where local people have an opportunity to question candidates about a wide range of issues and hear them talk about their values, why they want to be an MLA and what they would seek to do if elected. In years gone by Hustings meetings took place in lots of different venues. In recent years it has been the church that has provided the vast majority of face-to-face opportunities to quiz potential candidates about important political issues.
Why should the church get involved?
- Church hustings are a great opportunity for churches to reach out and serve local communities, providing people with the opportunity to put specific questions to all the candidates at the same time first hand, comparing and contrasting their answers.
- They create a real opportunity for churches to begin to build relationships with those who will be elected to represent them.
- Through hosting such a meeting, your church could demonstrate hospitality, interest in political issues, the aspiration of personal integrity and a wider concern for individuals beyond the church walls. Many visitors will come in who may never have entered a church before.
Last year, we were involved in organising a handful of hustings across Northern Ireland for the 2016 Assembly elections. This year we are encouraging churches to think seriously about hosting a Hustings and co-operating with other churches locally to serve their communities in this way.
If your church is planning on hosting a Hustings event, we would love to hear from you and provide you with any assistance you require. Send a email with the date and location of your Hustings to: firstname.lastname@example.org
Is a Hustings easy to organise?
Organising a Hustings can be a simple and really rewarding experience, particularly if you work together with other churches in your local area. Read our easy to follow Hustings Guide and Chairperson’s Guide below for step by step guidelines on organising a really effective Hustings event. We have also provided a selection of questions for candidates relating to issues of Life, Family and Justice.
To download the Hustings Guide pdf click here.
To download the Chairperson’s Guide pdf click here.
Questions for Candidates
To download Questions for Candidates pdf click here.